Li-Cycle & Eve Energy launch battery recycling collaboration
The Chinese battery cell manufacturer Eve Energy and the North American battery recycling specialist Li-Cycle have agreed on a cooperation. The aim of the cooperation is to develop recycling solutions for Eve Energy’s battery materials in three different areas.
According to the now-signed Memorandum of Understanding, the solutions that the two companies now intend to develop together will cover the North American market as well as the scrap from the production of battery cells that will be generated at the planned Eve production facilities in Malaysia and Hungary. Eve Energy is reportedly planning its first European factory in Debrecen, Hungary, to supply BMW with large cylindrical cells for New Class electric cars.
So far, Eve Energy has been producing primarily in China, but this is soon to change with the two factories mentioned. What exactly the “recycling solutions for Eve lithium-ion battery materials in the North American market” are to comprise was not specified in the announcement. What is possible is the recycling of used vehicle batteries that are on the road in North America with cells from Eve Energy. Concrete quantities are also not mentioned yet, as there is currently only a declaration of intent – and not yet a binding agreement.
It is also clear that Li-Cycle’s recycling network is by far the best developed in North America. The company relies on a patented ‘Hub & Spoke’ concept. The mechanical processing of the materials takes place in the spoke plants (usually near large customers or important battery centres), meaning that the black mass with the mixed battery raw materials is obtained there. The hydrometallurgical processing of the black mass then takes place in the central hubs, where it is split into the individual battery raw materials. In this way, important battery-grade materials, including lithium, nickel and cobalt, can be recovered from spent batteries or production rejects.
In addition to the plants in North America, some of which are already in operation, Li-Cycle is also planning at least three European sites in Norway, Germany and France. Another plant in Sardinia, which could be built in cooperation with the Glencore mining group, has not yet been officially confirmed. A decision on this is likely to be made next year.
“To better serve our international customers, we are going to construct green battery factories in Europe and Southeast Asia,” says Jianhua Liu, co-founder and CEO of Eve Energy. “To achieve this goal, we are implementing strategic initiatives such as industry chain integration, team internationalization, and the application of international operational models. We are pleased to partner with Li-Cycle to discuss the establishment of a high environmental standard battery recycling system to support sustainable development.”
“Li-Cycle continues to scale as the world’s preferred recycling partner and the MOU demonstrates how EVE recognizes our capabilities in delivering world-class lithium-ion battery recycling solutions with high efficiency, low emissions, and minimal waste generation to support a sustainable lithium-ion battery ecosystem,” said Tim Johnston, co-founder and chief executive officer of Li-Cycle.